Palette Profile: Lee Angold

Lee Angold is a Canadian botanical and scientific illustrator focusing on plants and other natural subjects. One great resource on their website is a spreadsheet of pigments compared across brands. They’ve also done cool experiments like painting a blue subject from green and purple. I love a person with strong opinions about color.

Let’s take a look at their palette as of June 2021 from the post “What’s in my studio palette.” Be sure to visit this post for more about the reasoning for each paint.

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Color Spotlight: Terra Cotta (PR102)

Da Vinci – Terra Cotta (PR102)

PR102 is a natural iron oxide. In the pantheon of earth shades, it’s the natural equivalent to synthetic PR101 (which is used to make Transparent Red Oxide and Indian Red). Similar to Transparent Red Oxide or Burnt Sienna (PBr7), PR102 is a terra cotta or burnt orange shade.

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Sunset Photos Part 2: More Mauve!

Last month, I began painting some of my old photos, and realized all the ones I wanted to paint were sunsets! I was a little disappointed with my results, largely because I kept insisting on using Ultramarine Blue in the more violet clouds, which kept them very electric-bright when they should have been mauve. So, I decided to paint some more, different sunset photos, with a special effort to keep the mauve clouds muted.

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Artist Palette Profile: Kelley Vivian

One of my favorite gouache artists is Kelley Vivian, who paints gorgeous nature scenes typically in New England settings. She has painted numerous National Parks across the US, but her local park, like mine, is Acadia in Maine, and I just love her homey-looking Maine landscapes and seascapes, complete with lots of evergreen trees and rocky beaches. I especially like the way she treats golden hour and sunset light, with glowing sunlight flashing through the trees. 

Kelley’s work was an inspiration to me picking up gouache, and I consulted her site when choosing my gouache palette. Here’s what I learned.

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Color Spotlight: Magenta (PV42)

Schmincke Horadam – Magenta (PV42)

I featured Schmincke Magenta (PV42) when comparing to Quinacridone Rose (PV19), to show how it is almost exactly the same color. But I thought I’d go ahead and make this color its own page, for ease of finding my thoughts on it and reminding myself of my past decisions on whether I need it or not.

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Finding Lightfast Gouache Pigments

As I transition from a watercolor-only artist to watercolor-and-gouache, I’m finding that it’s harder to find lightfast pigments in gouache, even in professional/artist lines. I love Holbein and Winsor & Newton’s gouache, but I’ve seen so many pigments in their lines with super-low ASTM lightfastness ratings – not just the typical fluorescents (which are also much more widespread in gouache), but stuff like PR1 or PR60 that are uncommon in watercolor because they’re notoriously fugitive. What gives?

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Mix Your Own: Mission Gold

I previously explained how to mix your own version of mixed Daniel Smith colors, and now I’d like to do the same for Mission Gold! Recently I happened to be window-shopping their line and saw some good ones that gave me new ideas for cool mixes. That’s cool thing about exploring brands’ commercial mixes – even if you don’t buy the paint, it can inspire your own explorations at home, if you have the component colors.

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Replacing Toxic Watercolor Paints

Lately, I’ve been on a nontoxic paint kick, trying to see if I can be just as happy with a nontoxic palette as with one that contains toxic paints made from heavy metals such as cadmium, cobalt, manganese, nickel, and copper. This is mostly a personal challenge, as I think toxic paints are fine for adults to paint with as long as you don’t put them in your mouth, but I’m a messy painter so it does put my mind at ease a bit to be using the safest pigments. Plus, they’re better for the environment. 

So, what colors would I put in a nontoxic palette? How do you replace common toxic colors? And after a couple of months, which paints do I miss? Read on!

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